Making communities smarter by being innovative and using data and connected technology will help Canadians live better lives now and prepare for the challenges ahead, according to the Canadian Government.
Following the official kick-off of the Smart Cities Challenge by the Honourable Amarjeet Sohi, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities, in Calgary, the Honourable Minister Marc Garneau, Minister of Transport, invited Montréal to take up the Challenge for their residents.
Minister Garneau encouraged communities to think smart and be innovative by working with the private and not-for-profit sectors and the research community to identify their priorities, set their own goals and come up with bold ideas to address them.
With the launch this month, the Government of Canada has fulfilled a commitment made in the 2017 Budget and Quebec communities have what they need to begin developing their applications. Detailed application guidelines are now available on the new Impact Canada Challenge Platform.
Communities have until April 24, 2018 to submit their applications. Those that are selected as finalists by the Smart Cities Challenge independent jury will receive a grant of $250,000 to support the development of their detailed proposal and business case. Winners will receive funding to implement their proposals.
Infrastructure Canada is engaging Indigenous leaders, communities and organizations to finalize the design of a competition specific to Indigenous communities that will reflect their unique realities and issues. Indigenous communities are also eligible to compete for all the prizes in the current competition.
“This challenge—the first of its kind in Canada—encourages communities to innovate by using bold ideas to improve people’s lives. Real change is happening already and across the country, communities large and small are bursting with new ideas. The Smart Cities Challenge will help bring them to life, and find solutions that achieve real and positive outcomes for residents. I am excited to hear the great ideas of Quebec,” stated Minister Garneau, on behalf of The Honourable Amarjeet Sohi, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities
- The Smart Cities Challenge was announced in Budget 2017. Through the Investing in Canadaplan, the Government of Canada is launching the first competition of the Smart Cities Challenge, helping communities across the country develop and implement their smart cities initiatives.
- The available Smart Cities Challenge prizes are: one prize of up to $50 million, available to all communities; two prizes of up to $10 million, available to all communities below 500,000 residents; and one prize of up to $5 million, available to all communities below 30,000 residents Finalists will be announced in Summer 2018, and winners will be announced in Spring 2019.
- Finalists and winning communities will be selected by an independent jury. An open call for jury members is posted on the Infrastructure Canada website.